Google has long time warned not to get paid links for the purpose of increasing PageRank and rankings. But so many companies kept buying links. For a long time people got away with paid links. Some got caught in Google paid link penalty some got away without any issues.
Recently ( September 2010 ) Google’s engineers removed the plug on paid links. We have seen and experienced 1000s of sites loosing rankings within a span of 2 weeks.
Almost all the sites were buying links one way or the other. We started getting leads where people have bought links and were affected by Google’s recent buying links penalty.
We at Search Engine Genie have always stayed away from paid links to boost PageRank. We have denied lot of offers from link brokers to buy links from them for our clients. In our company we don’t encourage buying links. There are areas where we tend to go a bit aggressive due to the competition but we always stayed away from buying links.
Till today we never bought a single link to our client. Most of the links are either got naturally or traded or got from some other purpose other than link buying.
If you recently got affected by paid link penalty we are ready to help you. We can get your site recovered and ranked without any paid links. We have done this before and doing it now for our clients. Google kept stressing buying links for the purpose of increasing ranking and PageRank is a big no-no. Feel free to fill up the contact form on this page or send us an email to this email ID (firstname.lastname@example.org). We will get back to you with a quote to recover your website and get it back in ranking. Understand that Google is not the only search engine that is against paid links even yahoo and bing have strict polices.
If you have trouble with any search engine contact us and we can help you.
Google recently penalized lot of websites that were buying links. In this process some sites were penalized even though they don’t buy links. Google’s new algorithm that detects paid links is a miserable failure according to me. So many sites got affected and even 2 or 3 our sites got affected. We never bought links for our client sites but 2 sites were affected because it looks like the backlinks were bought. The pattern of our links are no-where the same as the paid links that others get for their sites but still we lost 5 or 10 places for some important keywords. I can understand an automated algorithm cannot be 100% accurate in detecting paid links but they should also be careful before pulling the plug. I feel more manual review should happen so that the sites affected are really buying links and not just because their backlink pattern might look similar to a site that buys links for top ranking. The worse thing here is so many sites that are buying links got away with it and the sites that never bought links got caught. I hope Google is more careful with their buying links algorithm in future.
For long time there have been wrong assumptions on what constitutes a penalty in Google. Few years back Google has very less penalties but now we have lots of different type of penalties that Google can impose on a site to stop it from ranking. We have few of the penalties listed here
So what really constitutes a penalty and do you really have one?
Here is a simple checklist to see whether you have a penalty or not.
Your site has been ranking for a long time but suddenly almost all the major keywords disappeared and only you rank for obscure keywords – YES you have one
Your URL is removed from search results and you cannot find your site on top even searching for your unique domain name itself – Yes you have a penalty.
If there is a notification in webmaster tools that your site is violating guidelines and has been removed – Yes you have one.
One particular keyword has been ranking for a long time but suddenly it moves beyond rank 100. Yes you have link penalty.
Sitelinks to your disappear when it used to be there before and a search for yourdomain.com without www doesn’t bring up your site. But your site comes up when www is added to yourdomain.com. Yes you have a potential link buying / selling penalty.
If one keyword suddenly moves below 3 pages and never comes back even after 3 months. Yes it’s what we call -30 penalty check the SEO problems page in the above link.
Penalties are not something we need to be worried. Even the worst penalties can be removed by explaining to Google. If you have trouble with your site don’t hesitate to contact me and our team we will be ready to help you.
Google Webmaster Central Team comes up with an other useful posting on how to submit your site for reinclusion in care you fear your site banned or penalized by Google. Google has recently been imposing lots of penalties to a site though they are not totally visible to users. If you suspect your site is in someway penalized read this post on how to remove the penalty.
It seems Google’s TPR penalty is back, Google around February this year brought a new type of penalty for sites that buy / Sell links. Its called the TPR penalty. In this type of penalty Google will reduce the pagerank of sites that are suspected of Buying or Selling Backlinks. It seems the penalty is back and more sites are affected.
A member has reported Pagerank reduction to his website forums.digitalpoint.com/showthread.php?t=862890 here.
If you see TPR affecting your site please post here. We are doing some research on this and would love to hear feedback from others. We want to see whether TPR penalty affects only sites that Buy and Sell links or it affects innocent sites caught up inbetween. We have seen some sites loose TB PR without any link selling or buying that is why we need to ASK.
tnx.net is banned from Google for violating Google’s guidelines. If you see their site tnx.net you can see they are selling text links without nofollow and selling Pagerank links which are against Google’s guidelines. Their site is banned from Google obviously but to avoid looking like a banned site they blocked Googlebot from their site
their robots.txt ( tnx.net/robots.txt ) reads
Well they not only like to violate Google’s guidelines they will also teach you how to hide links using their Spam tool,
The tool promotion page in Digital point forum reads
“Have you ever thought of WHY Google wants to scare you from buying links? Because it works great, when done with care, of course! In the previous thread “How to Rank N1 in Google for a Highly Competitive Keyword – Revealed” I spoke of some tips which will definitely help to stay away of Google’s radars when buying links. Backlink building has to be done with great care – not to get penalized. 2 main points are: moderate link placement speed and a variety of link anchors to make links look natural. When over 100 new links pointing to one page appear in several days, all with same anchors (which is unnatural) – Google will most likely notice you and the pages you were promoting may disappear from SERPs for 1 month. This automated “too many links at once” filter is intended to keep you away from buying links, but it’s very easy to avoid this filter! “
Already we know text-link-ads.com run by patrick gavin was banned now we have an other link broker under Google’s radar go down.
If people think link brokers are the solution i recommend don’t take that page. Instead find ways to improve your site and attract links.
Lots of TPR ( Toolbar Pagerank Reduction ) Penalty websites which got affected in december 2007 update are still not ready to change their ways. Most of them like searchenginejournal, forbes.com, washingtonpost.com got their pagerank back,
Searchenginejournal was slapped with 3 points reduction to PR4 now are back to PR7, Forbes lost 2 points and was slapped to PR5, now they removed the paid text link ads and are back to PR7, Washingtonpost.com lost 3 points and was slapped with PR5 now they are back to PR8.
So what is the secret behind getting the Pagerank back and remove TPR Penalty.
First if you check Searchenginejournal they removed all text link ads and now all ads pass through a redirect script that doesn’t pass pagerank,
Forbes completely removed all text links and possibly the pagerank came by itself or they might have sent a reconsideration to check their site for paid links.
Washington past now has Nofollow on all the text links they sell, if you take the source of their page you can see that the text link ads that go out of their page don’t pass pagerank anymore all of them go through a nofollow.
I know there are some sites who are not ready to go friendly with Google when it comes to TPR and are happy to be at PR4 or PR5 and continue to do what they are not recommended to do. Instead they have their usual blogging power to curse Google for what they did to protect their algorithm. I recommend those sites to correct what they did and possibly file a reconsideration request to get back their Toolbar Pagerank or just keep the credit of running website that has lost some trust in Google’s algorithm.
Though I would like to stay away from commenting about individual sites one site I personally admire is SEOchat.com they look too silly to have a PR of 4. Being hit with TPR a reduction of 3 points were applied and their regular pagerank was PR7. Obvious reason is their option to sell text link ads on their site without any nofollow which is not a great sign especially for a site which depends so much on Google to discuss in their forum and so many tools that query Google. Their forum’s discussion has 75% discussion on Google and remaining about common issues and other search engines.
For all the 100s of 1000s of users who are regular to SEOchat its not a great way to welcome them with a PR4, Pagerank is like a fashion issue for a website. Most of the people out there especially people who are into search engines see Pagerank as a value of quality for a website. I hope SEO Chat a great site for SEOs will get their Pagerank back by no-following text link ads on their sites. They should set an example for all users who visit their site for SEO purposes.
We have often heard of google imposing penalty for sites or infact ban them completely from the index. Some of the forums had been buzzing on whether Google has any sort of page specific penalty in my experience yes google does have a page specific penalty. Here is a simple check what are possible reasons that could cause a page specific Google penalty
1. Links to a bad neighbourhood from that page. Say you have a grea site and you run a grea forum in that, one day some spammer posts an adult spam post. If googlebot sees this and see that your site is linking to an other highly spammed site then mostly that page will be penalized and stopped from entering google’s index. This is particularly tough when you run a good site and only one page is all adult stuff. Googlebot is designed to understand potential reasons how adult content came into your forum and they will impose a penalty only for that URL. we have seen this in our very own site’s forum.
2. Too many spammy links to sites that google considers spammy will hurt that page.
3. Duplicate content across the web or within your site if you have a particular page that is replicated as multiple versions within your site then it will hurt the duplicate page copy and Google will impose penalty or ban on duplicate version of the page / pages and keep just one copy of the page. Ban can simply be for the duplicate pages.
4. Strong filters applied by google on specific pages can also boot a page from rankings or prevent it from ranking. Google has very strong ranking filters and this could stop a page from ranking or penalizing it for reasons that are in the filter.
5. Hidden links or hidden images /gifs or hidden content can also cause page ban please make sure you do a complete review of that.
SEO Blog Team,
When we listened to the live webmaster central live chat which happened on friday they were so tough on sites that are selling links. Also they have a link in webmaster tools to report paid links. Plus they have a good written explanation here.
According to that document:
“Buying or selling links that pass PageRank is in violation of Google’s webmaster guidelines and can negatively impact a site’s ranking in search results. Not all paid links violate our guidelines. Buying and selling links is a normal part of the economy of the web when done for advertising purposes, and not for manipulation of search results. Links purchased for advertising should be designated as such. This can be done in several ways, such as:Adding a rel=”nofollow” attribute to the tag Redirecting the links to an intermediate page that is blocked from search engines with a robots.txt fileGoogle works hard to ensure that it fully discounts links intended to manipulate search engine results, such excessive link exchanges and purchased links that pass PageRank. If you see a site that is buying or selling links that pass PageRank, let us know. We’ll use your information to improve our algorithmic detection of such links.”
Infact they did mention in their LIVE chat that sites which sell links will be penalized. Ok now when we go to the official google blog here http://googleblog.blogspot.com/ we can see that few of the sites listed here do sell lot of text based links on their site. Though they nofollow those links I feel linking to those sites means they support those sites.
So can we assume that google’s friends can sell links. I don’t want to rant and I can understand they don’t have control over it but still they link to sites which sell links and this is like endorsing those site’s Search Engine Spamming efforts. So I feel best way to sell links on your site is to go to Search Conferences make friends with Google Employees and sell links safely on our sites with Google’s direct approval.
According to cyber wire a website which monitors online highest paying keywords mesothelioma and loans still top the list. Lawyers are still the highest paying bidders. Accident attorneys, DUI lawyers, mesothelioma attorneys all pay huge sum due to the stiff competition in their industry,
I just dont want to stuff our blog with all these high spammed keywords. It will make our blog look like one major spam for top paying keywords. SO I am posting a screen shot to avoid the keywords getting crawled
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